by RIA GOODMAN
THOUGH THE Barbados Under-15 football team is unaware of what to expect in the upcoming CONCACAF Championship in Florida, coach Renaldo Gilkes believes the ongoing international friendly matches are good preparation.
On Monday night the team played their fifth match, defeating Grenada 2-0 in a game be less competitive than that against St Lucia.
“They [Grenada] weren’t as aggressive, they didn’t offer much offensively. Defensively they were organised but they didn’t offer much of a resistance to our possession-type game and our penetration play. The score 2-0 could have been more. It was a comfortable display by our boys,” he said.
He told MIDWEEK SPORT they were still developing especially in playing international football, and he acknowledged that previously Under-15 international football was unheard of since young players were usually introduced at the Under-17 level.
Nevertheless, Gilkes said that he was confident in the ability of the youngsters.
“The international matches were necessary because we had the tournament in St Maarten where we placed third but apart from that we had no real gauge of how we grew since that tournament compared to now,” he said. Improvements
“For that tournament, we knew where we wanted to be, where we needed to be and we knew improvements needed to take place. At that point our improvements needed to be on the offensive front where we needed to convert our chances and create more opportunities in the second and final third.”
“From the Dominican game to now we have managed to create more opportunities so, therefore, that objective has been met. However, converting those opportunities is still an area of concern.
Defensively we have been very stingy in our defending and organised.
The [area] left to be improved is converting our opportunities.”
Barbados will be competing in a friendly match against St Kitts next week before they compete for the first time in the CONCACAF Championship at the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida from August 13 to 19.
Adapted from nationnews.com